Toshiba Thrive Tablet to Start at $429, Expects to Be Top-Three Player Quickly
Toshiba has finally given its Honeycomb Android tablet a name, and you'll be able to pre-order one starting June 13th. It's called the Thrive, and Toshiba is says it's slate will be worth the wait when it becomes available July 10. In fact, the company says that it expects to be among the top three tablet vendors by the end of the year, including all platforms.
Toshiba is hoping to deliver a no-compromise experience with the Thrive by using the latest Android 3.1 software (which promises to be much more stable). You'll also get a full-size USB port and included File Manager software, as well as a full-size SD Card slot. The price for these ports is a little extra girth versus some competing tablets; just like the Xoom, the Thrive ways 1.6 pounds and it's .61 inches thick. Read on for the pricing, more product details, and a full gallery.
The Toshiba Thrive will start at $429 for the 8GB version, the $479 will get you 16GB, and the 32GB version will cost $579. That's not the cheapest Android tablet around--the Asus Transformer costs $399--but Toshiba says its brand and other enhancements will carry weight with consumers. These include SRS stereo speakers, Resolution Plus technology for the display that makes SD content look more like high-def content, and a removable battery. You can also charge the battery in 1.5 hours, which Toshiba says is nearly twice as fast as the competition.
Toshiba isn't offering much in the way of bundled apps except for its App Place and Book Place, as well as a Start Place, which is similar to the start page on Toshiba notebooks. The company says it wants to mostly deliver a pure Honeycomb experience.
When we asked Jeff Barney, GM of Toshiba, how well the Thrive will do and how well Toshiba will fare in the tablet wars, he told us that he expects the company to be among the top three companies in terms of market share and that it gobble up 20 percent market share among Android tablet makers.
As far as accessories go, Toshiba will sell Thrive tablet covers in multiple colors, a multi-dock with HDMI, a standard dock, and a nifty looking Portfolio 360 case. Toshiba says it will also make a Bluetooth keyboard available, but there's no word on whether a keyboard that works with the Thrive's docking connector is on the way.
Toshiba waited out the first wave in the netbook market, but will that strategy work this time around? Stay tuned for our full review of the Thrive. In the meantime, enjoy some fresh pictures in the gallery.